US restricts travel from India due to rising COVID casesMay 4, 2021
US imposes indefinite travel ban to passengers from India effective May 4 due to high cases of COVID in the country.
President Biden has issued a proclamation imposing a COVID-19 public health travel ban on foreign nationals with recent physical presence in India. This same type of travel ban is already in effect for Brazil, China, Iran, Ireland, countries in the European Schengen Area, South Africa, and the United Kingdom.
Starting at 12:01 am EDT on May 4, 2021, foreign nationals who have been physically present in India within 14 days of travel to the United States will be barred from entry, unless they qualify for an exception.
Following the advice of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, US restricts travel from India since the country is already tagged as Level 4.
Consular operations in India are at a significantly reduced capacity due to the COVID pandemic, so those seeking exceptions to the new ban from a U.S. consulate are likely to experience delays and challenges.
While Covid infections and deaths have been on the decline in the U.S. as millions of Americans get vaccinated each day, India is in the grip of an unprecedented spike in cases.
The country is averaging about 3,050 Covid deaths per day, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University, though media reports indicate the official figure is being understated. India has reported an average of about 357,000 new cases per day over the past seven days — up about 26% from a week ago, Johns Hopkins data shows.
The following travelers are not subject to the ban, but may be required to undergo screening and other measures upon arrival:
- U.S. citizens and nationals;
- U.S. lawful permanent residents;
- Spouses of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents;
- A foreign national who is the parent or legal guardian of an unmarried U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident under the age of 21;
- A foreign national who is the sibling of a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident, provided they are both under 21;
- A foreign national who is the child, foster child or ward of a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident, or who is a prospective adoptee seeking to enter the United States on an IR-4 or IH-4 visa;
- A foreign national traveling at the invitation of the U.S. government for a purpose related to containment or mitigation of the COVID-19 virus;
- A foreign air or sea crewmember;
- Certain A, C, E-1 (TECRO or TECO employees), G, and NATO nonimmigrants or whose travel falls within the scope of section 11 of the United Nations Headquarters Agreement;
- A foreign national whose entry would further important U.S. law enforcement objectives;
- A foreign national whose entry would be in the national interest; and
- Members of the U.S. armed forces and their spouses and children.
If a foreign national is subject to a regional ban and does not qualify for an exception, the State Department will not issue a visa to that individual.
Source: Fragomen.com and CDC